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Italian police find John Paul II relic discarded by thieves

Published on Feb 1, 2014 5:38 PM
 
A reporter speaks in front of a broken glass of a niche in the small mountain church of San Pietro della Ienca, near the city of L'Aquila, on Jan 28, 2014. Italian police have recovered part of a religious relic stained with Polish pope John Paul II's blood that was thrown away by thieves thinking it worthless, the Italian press reported on Saturday, Feb 1, 2014. -- FILE PHOTO: REUTERS

ROME (AFP) - Italian police have recovered part of a religious relic stained with Polish pope John Paul II's blood that was thrown away by thieves thinking it worthless, the Italian press reported on Saturday.

The relic was snatched a week ago along with a cross from a small church in Italy's central region of Abruzzo, sparking a region-wide search with police and sniffer dogs.

The three robbers, unaware that the small piece of framed cloth was valuable, threw it away in parts but could not remember where.

The relic consisted of a metal frame around a piece of blood-stained cloth, believed to be part of the robe the pontiff was wearing when he was shot in an assassination attempt in St Peter's Square in 1981.

 
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